During the early morning rush and at the end of a long day, brushing young kids’ teeth can be a challenge. Here are some tips from our expert pediatrician and dad of six, Dr. Adam Aronson.
Tips for easy toothbrushing
- Use a soft-bristled toothbrush designed for brushing an infant’s or child’s teeth.
- If the child has trouble holding a toothbrush, try making the handle thicker by putting it inside a tennis ball. The toothbrush handle can also be strapped to your child’s hand with a wide rubber band, a hair band or Velcro. Toothbrushes with thick handles can also be found in retail and discount stores.
- Break the process into small steps that your child can understand and practice. Place a hand over your child’s hand to guide the toothbrush as your child brushes.
- Use toothpaste with fluoride that your child likes and that feels good in his or her mouth. An adult should always place toothpaste on the toothbrush. We offer fluoride treatment in our office. Ask at your next checkup. Our trained staff can administer a 5% fluoride varnish which leaves a protective coating on your child’s teeth to reduce tooth decay. This treatment is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics and multiple dental groups.
We also asked our experienced group of parents on our Facebook page and got some great ideas.
Following are just a few:
- Make brushing a competition between siblings, such as who brushes first, longest or best.
- Sing Raffi’s Brush Your Teeth song. Brush for your little one for two verses and let him or her brush for the last verse.
- Say, “I see Diego bouncing around in your mouth! We need to brush really well so we can get him out!” Or any other character your kids like.
- Use a fun tooth paste like this one by Crayola that looks like crayons.
Send ideas of your own our way on our Facebook page.